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McCarthy takes step forward in return from DL

Van Slyke optioned to Triple-A Oklahoma City in corresponding move
MLB.com

LOS ANGELES -- In his first start since being reinstated from the 10-day disabled list, Dodgers right-hander Brandon McCarthy navigated through six innings, on 75 pitches, allowing six hits and two runs (one earned) in the Dodgers' 5-4 walk-off win against the Royals on Saturday.

McCarthy returned to the rotation after he battled with the yips in a start on June 25 against the Rockies. McCarthy issued back-to-back walks and hurled three wild pitches in three innings, and he was placed on the DL with right knee tendinitis the following day.

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LOS ANGELES -- In his first start since being reinstated from the 10-day disabled list, Dodgers right-hander Brandon McCarthy navigated through six innings, on 75 pitches, allowing six hits and two runs (one earned) in the Dodgers' 5-4 walk-off win against the Royals on Saturday.

McCarthy returned to the rotation after he battled with the yips in a start on June 25 against the Rockies. McCarthy issued back-to-back walks and hurled three wild pitches in three innings, and he was placed on the DL with right knee tendinitis the following day.

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"It was a good step forward," McCarthy said about his outing. "Started off well, kind of got wobbly there in the middle ... some good, some bad, but it was good step forward learning where I'm at."

Those command issues showed up in the fifth inning Saturday when McCarthy hurled a wild pitch and walked a batter with two outs forcing pitching coach Rick Honeycutt to come to the mound to settle down the rigthy. McCarthy said he had issues with his arm angle and lost focus on his release point.

"Honey came out and reminded me, get back on top of the ball," McCarthy said. "Right there it I was like 'Oh, yeah,' so it gives me something to aim for and at that point, it all felt normal again."

The 34-year-old battled back out of the jam to get Lorenzo Cain to pop out, ending the inning. Manager Dave Roberts let him go back out for the sixth, and McCarthy struck out two batters, gave up a single and induced a popout.

"I know we need him," Roberts said. "There's a point where you have to instill confidence, you can't just talk about confidence as a manager, you have to act on it. I did see some good throws, and I wanted him to know that we're behind him and we need him, and we need him to be good."

The Dodgers optioned outfielder Scott Van Slyke to Triple-A Oklahoma City to make room on the roster for McCarthy.

Worth noting
• Right-hander Chris Hatcher will play in two or three rehab games before he comes off the DL, Roberts said. Hatcher landed on the 10-day DL on June 23 with thoracic inflammation in his right shoulder.

• The Dodgers expect to have Hyun-Jin Ryu back at some point after the All-Star break, and he will not need a rehab assignment, Roberts said. Ryu was placed on the DL with a left foot contusion Tuesday.

Joshua Thornton is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles.

Los Angeles Dodgers, Brandon McCarthy, Scott Van Slyke